No matter where Iserve my guests, it seems they like my kitchen best.
This saying has adorned wall plaques in many people's kitchens, and for most individuals the sentiment is quite true. The kitchen tends to be the gathering place for the family. When thinking about renovating the kitchen, it pays to have entertaining in mind.
It is widely known that improvements to kitchens and bathrooms often reap the greatest return on investment. When making changes to the kitchen, paying attention to the trend of kitchen entertaining can make the room even more valuable - should a homeowner choose to sell at a later point in time. Gearing renovations around kitchen entertaining also can make the space desireable for current homeowners.
Here are some renovation decisions to consider that can make the kitchen an ideal gathering spot for family and friends.
*Space: The best kitchens for entertaining are roomy and feature an open floor plan. For homeowners who have limited space, the first decision may be to expand the kitchen by building an extension on the home or taking down a wall. Many homeowners find that spacious eat-in-kitchens are preferable over a small kitchen and formal dining area. So if a dining room abuts the kitchen, remove the wall to create a large kitchen space.
*Multiple islands: Instead of one large island, consider two islands. They are less cumbersome, making it easier for guests to easily traverse the kitchen. One island can be set up with a prep sink and wine cooler, while the other can feature a countertop-mounted induction stovetop for convenience and safety. A few tall stools around the back of one island can provide seating while prepping, or for simple conversation.
*Company cleanup: Think about large sinks that can accommodate tall pots and pans, such as a double-basin apron sink. Drawer-style dishwashers can be installed so that delicate china and glassware can be washed separately from grimy pots. This segregated style means homeowners can save money by washing smaller loads as needed.
*Gathering niche: A butler's pantry or another alcove equipped with beverage center enables guests to gather in an area away from the main cooking and preparation space.
*Breakfast nook: Cozy banquette seating nestled next to a picture window is a great spot for early-morning coffee or when overnight guests trickle down for a hearty breakfast. Decorative brick or stone -- or even a fireplace next to the nook -- completes the warm and fuzzy feel of the area.
*Large table: Homeowners who do a lot of hosting can benefit from a table that seats many. Purchase a large table or one that can be expanded with a drop-in leaf.
*Hidden appliances: The kitchen should be decorated according to homeowners' preferences. Key appliances such as dishwashers, refrigerators and even ovens can be masked with cabinet facing, so they blend right into the rest of the cabinetry. A larger refrigerator with features for entertaining, such as room for platters or bakery cakes, is ideal for the host and hostess. A separate beverage drawer eliminates the need to open the refrigerator repeatedly, plus it's at a great height for kids looking for juice boxes.
*Lighting: Homeowners should consider many different lighting sources. Pendant lights over islands illuminate these work stations. Recessed lighting under cabinets can brighten countertop areas that tend to be dark. A chandelier or bold fixture over the table shows off the amazing meal.
Because the kitchen is such a gathering spot, renovations to this room should reflect how much foot traffic and use the kitchen gets.